Skills and Gear for Self Reliance and Homesteading

Book Review-The Self-Sufficient Life and How to Live It


The Self-Sufficient Life and How to Live It

The Complete Back-To-Basics Guide

Author: John Seymour              2009 DK Publishing

You know, this book is so nice that could be on your coffee table, but that doesn’t take away from it’s usefulness. I love the layout of copy and photos that just make the book easy to read.

Anytime you talk about self sufficiency, most conversations start with the farm. Vegetable to meat is on the table as to the how to’s and the why for’s. This is where the prepper/survivalist meets himself after the food stored gets old and the . Any long term survival, after an incident or SHTF event must include growing your own
food. I would also offer that the time to learn these skills is now, not when you need it. Do you buy auto insurance right AFTER the accident? So we need to have skill sets that meet the new challenge, the new world is not going to wait for you to catch up, do or die may be for real.

So all 400 pages are well laid out and easy to read. The full color photos and sketches really help identify plants. The animal photos are a little kindergarten in places but it’s all useful. If you ever wondered how many things the old farmers and ranchers had to know to do, just follow the book. From making garden beds, saddling horses, building walls from sticks, wood and brick, to cooking up the harvest. I did enjoy all of the chapters some are just an overview but most have good information that you can take and use right now.

Good section on raising animals for meat as well as harvesting wild game. They don’t go into wild game much but there are other books that can fill that better anyway. Field crops have a section, although I think these should be planted minimally since you need a lot of acres to create a substantial crop. There are sections for canning and drying foods out and storing them. Now comes the crowd favorite, Beer and Wine making, both having chapters of their own.

Green energy with wind and solar have their own large chapter. Composting toilets, Wood stoves, water and solar power cover a couple of chapters. Then we have one entire large chapter on crafts and skills. Now here is some meat that we can sink a saw into. Overall the book gives you a great leg up on building a skill set that could make you an asset when times are hard. Give it a read and expand your mind!

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